Extreme athlete and skydiver Felix Baumgartner has cancelled his planned death-defying 23-mile free fall into the New Mexico desert because of high winds.
The 43-year-old former military parachutist from Austria had hoped to become the first skydiver to break the sound barrier and shatter three other world records.
But the weather on Tuesday forced his team to cancel his planned ascent in a 55-storey, ultra-thin helium balloon that was to take him to the stratosphere.
Because the balloon is so delicate, it could only take flight if winds were 2mph or below.
Those plans were in question before sunrise, when winds at 700 feet above ground - the top of the balloon - were 20mph, far above the 3mph maximum for a safe launch, mission meteorologist Don Day said.
With winds calming, they began the launch process, with Baumgartner suiting up and entering the capsule. During the inflation, a live online feed showed winds whipping the balloon around.
The balloon had been scheduled to launch about 7am local time from a field near the airport in a flat dusty town that until now has been best known for a rumoured 1947 UFO landing.
Baumgartner was to make a nearly three-hour ascent to 120,000 feet, then take a bunny-style hop from a pressurised capsule into a near-vacuum where there is barely any oxygen to begin what is expected to be the fastest, farthest free-fall from the highest-ever manned balloon.